The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Green thumbs


Cortney Ofstad/Daily Globe

ROSS NIEMI and Danny Bolich plant flowers in downtown Hurley Monday. Both are third grade students at the Hurley K-12 School.

HURLEY — Third grade students from the Hurley K-12 School helped beautify the downtown by planting flowers along Silver Street Monday.

Students, paired with adult volunteers, placed flowers and plants in planters located on the sidewalks.

Joy Schelble, nutrition educator coordinator for the Iron County University of Wisconsin-Extension office, coordinated the event, along with the Master Gardeners and the city of Hurley.

Schelble has been working with the school district’s school garden, and according to her, planting flowers is an extension of that.

“This is an extension of the conversations we have been having about what makes a healthy community,” Schelble said. “These kids are able to feel connected to their community by making it beautiful downtown. This is all towards a healthier Hurley.”

Impatiens and petunias were planted because they are long lasting and flower throughout the summer, according to Schelble.

More than 25 volunteers participated in the event, including parents, grandparents, Mayor Joe Pinardi and representatives from the Hurley Police Department, Master Gardeners, Iron County Health Department, UW-Extension office, Iron County Sheriff’s Department and the Hurley Area Chamber of Commerce.

“With all of these wonderful people here, it shows that they really care about how Hurley is presented,” Dorrene O’Donnell, chamber director, said. “This community pulls together and does what is needed. They are right there to help, and it is stunning that every time something is needed, the community is there to help. We may be small, but it’s all about Hurley pride.”

According to O’Donnell, that Hurley pride not only extends to the students, but to other communities, as well.

“For the young ones who are getting dirty, they can show their parents what they planted and the work that they did,” O’Donnell said. “They can be proud of that, and other communities also take pride in events like this. I know Ironwood is beautifying its downtown and it’s wonderful how these communities are proud of who and what they are.”

After planting, students ate a picnic lunch, donated by local businesses and organizations.

“We are so thankful to everyone who donated, from Giovanoni’s donating the flowers, the city of Hurley for donating the soil and everyone for the lunch and volunteering,” Schelble said. “Also, a special thanks to the Master Gardeners and Diane Fontecchio who is instrumental in making this happen each year and keeping an eye on the flowers every summer.”


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